Before any spell work or ritual begins, a witch should prepare by casting a circle of protection. Casting a circle is based on Wiccan teachings but is beneficial for any non-denominational witch. Casting a protection circle helps protect the ritual space and ensure no negative energies get in the area while casting. The ritual cast will protect spell work inside or outside a dwelling in nature or a bedroom. Witches can perform spells without casting a circle, but it allows other powers to invade the space that may not help the end goal or even energies that thrive off of sabotage. When a witch casts a circle, they invite their ancestors, the magick of the universe, or any deities they worship into the magickal ritual to gain specific help and guidance through that channeling.
The circle of protection creates a barrier from outside influences to access the ritual, or the witches open energy. It focuses the energy within a small area to get the most out of the magickal power. Some witches may call upon the deities into the circle, while other witches may call upon their energy, elements, or universal forces. It is also good to visualize the power of the self surrounding the witch in the circle. This visualization represents the witches’ magickal energy, so if it’s dark and smoky or bright and glittery, embrace the visual and feel protected being surrounded by the individual power. It just depends on what you envision your magic to look like, and it is good to imagine this magic because it creates your personal sacred space.
Witches cast circles with different tools involved, but the most common is lighting a candle and chanting the magickal words while envisioning a circle around the self. Lighting many candles in a circle is an excellent way to make sure that the ring is as cast strong, especially if the witch lights the candle with intention. Before releasing the protection ring, the witch should cleanse their sacred space with sage or some cleansing ritual. Cleansing the space should always be done along with mentally pushing out any negativity, using a broom to sweep away the area, and imagining a large circle around you. Some witches want to physically draw a circle on the floor with chalk, salt, or other items. A drawn circle is not necessary since envisioning the circle does the same to keep out evil spirits as a physical circle. Some witches might have problems mentally conceiving the space or want a physical barrier.
Casting the Circle
The casting of the circle should be done primarily with elements and directions. Creating a circle is the best method to create protection around the witch since the directions and elements are universal to all magick. This method applies to all methodologies and all types of magick.
The first element should be East, and this is the element of air. Envision wind and the atmosphere surrounding you while chanting “Ruler of the East and the element of air. I call upon you.”
Then turn clockwise to the South, which is ruled by the fire element, and envision the warmth of the Sun or a campfire. Chant “Ruler of the South and the element of fire. I call upon you.”
Then move clockwise again to the West the element of water. Envision water and the waves cleansing bad energies away and call upon the element of water. “Ruler of the West and the element of water. I call upon you.”
Then the last turn to the North, the ruler of the earth. Think of the earth and feeling the dirt beneath your feet. “Ruler of the North and the element of earth. I call upon you.”
Lastly, while still facing the North, think of your magickal energy and try to envelop yourself in it throughout the whole circle. Also, envision the light going all the way to the sky and down through the ground. Sit with the energy for a moment and feel the circle connected with the elements and the directions. Then state, “I cast this circle of protection, so above, so below within and without, I feel the power of energy guiding and enveloping me.”
It is best not to leave the circle throughout the whole ritual, but if an emergency comes up and the practice requires interruption, create a door in the sacred space. The best method is to hold an athame or wand in your hand and make a cutting motion across the circle and say, “I wish to open a safe passage through my circle. So mote it be” It will help protect your circle’s energy and then merely do the reverse to close the door when returning. Stating, “Please close my passage to the circle. So mote it be.”
Brining an ancestor into the circle can be quickly done by visualizing and thinking of the ancestors surrounding you in the circle. These can be ancestors you have never met, and they only need to be asked to come into the circle by feeling their protection around you. It could be family members or loved ones who have passed, even if they did not practice the craft by inviting them in as guardians or protectors. You can ask in witch ancestors or famous witches from the past by inviting them to be your protectors since they are ancestors to those who practice magick.
Bringing deities into the circle for protection should be done by stating the phrase before finishing casting the circle and after the elements and directions. The chant is, “Ancestors protect me in my circle. Help me cast and perform divine magick. Guide my magick into the universe and to the destination of the source.”
Witches who worship or feel protected by a specific deity or multiple know how to work with their deity’s energy and bring them into the circle. Witches who do not usually work with Gods and Goddesses can bring them into the circle and seek protection by deities just as much as one who frequently works with them. It is done the same way with ancestors by asking the particular creators to come into the circle and ask them for protection. Think of the items or aspects that these deities rule and imagine the deities surrounding you in the ring. As long as the Gods and Goddesses feel acknowledged and respected, they should bring their protection energy to the circle.
The phrase to bring in Gods and Goddesses, along with the ancestors, can be said before the last step in casting the circle. If the witch wants to channel both ancestors and the deities, the deities come in after the ancestors. These being work in a tier system for protection. Ancestors are called into an inner circle to surround the caster. Then the deities surround both the caster and the ancestors as an outer circle. The chant is, “Gods and Goddesses (or use deities names) protect me in my circle. Help me cast and perform divine magick. Guide my magick into the universe and to the destination of the source.”
Close the Circle
After the ritual completes, you will need to close the circle, and this will release the energy out into the universe and close out your sacred space. Turn in counterclockwise or reverse order of how you opened the circle.
First, face the North and state, “Rulers of the North and earth. Thank you for your energy and protection. I bid you farewell.”
Then you’ll turn to the West and release the water. With stating, “Rulers the West and water. Thank you for your energy and protection. I bid you farewell.”
Then turn to the South. State “Rulers South and fire. Thank you for your energy and protection. I bid you farewell.“
Then turn to the East and to release the air. With stating, “Rulers the East and air. Thank you for your energy and protection. I bid you farewell.”
The last turn will complete the circle by then returning to North. Finally, you will state, “Thank you, Nature and Divine beings. I open the circle and release the energy back into the Earth. Please guide my magick. So mote it be.” You can also thank your ancestors and deities here and say, “Merry meet, merry part, and merry meet again,” as a way to let them know you will call on them again and that you are grateful for their protection.
Casting a circle is a process that takes work to do, but it is worth protecting the ritual’s energy. The process will become more comfortable with the practice, and soon, a witch will find it becomes second nature to cast a circle of protection before spell work. Casting a circle also creates a start point and endpoint in the ritual streamlining the process and making the spell casting feel complete. The method of casting a circle can be empowering, feeling the witch’s energy meshing with the elements and powerful beings.
Ruler of the East and the element of air. I call upon you.
Ruler of the South and the element of fire. I call upon you.
Ruler of the West and the element of water. I call upon you.
Ruler of the North and the element of earth. I call upon you.
Ancestors protect me in my circle. Help me cast and perform divine magick. Guide my magick into the universe and to the destination of the source.
Gods and Goddesses (or use deity’s names) protect me in my circle. Help me cast and perform divine magick. Guide my magick into the universe and to the destination of the source.
I cast this circle of protection, so above, so below within, and without, I feel the power of energy guiding and enveloping me.
Rulers of the North and earth energy. Thank you for your energy and protection. I bid you farewell.
Rulers the West and water. Thank you for your energy and protection. I bid you farewell.
Rulers South and fire. Thank you for your energy and protection. I bid you farewell.
Rulers the East and air. Thank you for your energy and protection. I bid you farewell.
To the Ancestors and Deities. Merry meet, merry part, and merry meet again,
Thank you, Nature and Divine beings. I close the circle and release the energy back into the Earth. Please guide my magick. So mote it be.